Senate Pork
July 16th, 2009

The Senate has posted its list of this year’s member item distribution. Some call it pork but the Senate calls it allocations of funding to community projects.

Democrats were slated to vote on the package on June 8 before the coup took place. Democrats finally managed to approve the list early this morning.

Democrats are taking home $77 million out of a total $85 million package of pork. Republicans get a meager $8 million.

Republicans had hoped to enact rules changes that would equally distribute member items before the money was handed out this year. The new rules changes do say that that the majority will get two-thirds of all member items starting next year.

Democrats have promised to give Republicans around $40 million worth of unspent member items funds from previous years.

Other controversy surrounds the member item list because after the coup Democrats accused Sen. Pedro Espada Jr. of trying to direct $2 million in member items to two hastily assembled Bronx groups run by his acquaintances. Democrats alleged that Espada was motivated to bolt the Democratic conference because they denied him those funds.

Now the Democratic Majority Leader, Espada has been rewarded with over $2 million in member items. Most of Espada’s funds have been allocated to the New Bronx Chamber of Commerce Inc.

We will have more on exactly who got what. The Times Union has the pork breakdown in map form.

By on July 16, 2009, 4:04 pm
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